Monday, 8 July 2013

Review: Right of Way by Lauren Barnholdt

Right of Way by Lauren Barnholdt
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication date: July 9th 2013.
My rating: 2 stars


Here are Peyton and Jace, meeting on vacation. Click! It’s awesome, it’s easy, it’s romantic. This is the real deal. Unless it isn’t. Because when you’re in love, you don’t just stop calling one day. And you don’t keep secrets. Or lie. And when your life starts falling apart, you’re supposed to have the other person to lean on. Here are Peyton and Jace again, broken up but thrown together on a road trip. One of them is lying about the destination. One of them is pretending not to be leaving something behind. And neither of them is prepared for what’s coming on the road ahead…

I totally went into Right of Way expecting it to be a fun Summery read, with a road trip and a gorgeous romance. However unfortunately this wasn’t the case. Jace and Peyton find themselves helping each other when they least expect to. We know of a brief history between them but we don’t totally know what exactly has gone down. But when Peyton finds herself in a difficult situation, Jace decides to help her out no questions asked. 

The story is given to us alternatively in flash backs from before they knew each other and to their present situation. I was really eager to discover what had gone on between them to make their relationship such a tense one, but as their back story started unravelling I quickly became to realise that I didn’t really care about it. Jace and Peyton didn’t really leave the greatest impression with me, we were given pov’s from both characters over the course of the story, but I had a hard time connecting with either of them. Peyton did have a lot of her own problems to deal with, but she came across as really self-absorbed and whiny. It was totally obvious to anyone that she still cared about Jace, just get it out in the open and admit it already. And Jace too, his big secret of why things didn’t work out in the first place, did seem really pointless. I was all expecting a decent or reasonable enough explanation, but instead found it to be a little ridiculous.

Thing were tense between Jace and Peyton and I usually can deal with this when this happens. I typically like books which put characters that don’t get along in awkward situations and then through the journey they share together they end up growing in strength, discovering who they are and dealing with things in an appropriate way. Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour, Golden and Saving June are perfect examples of when this actually happened. There was so much immense growth for the characters and I truly appreciated when the characters worked together to achieve an end result and feel better about themselves. For me this really didn’t happen for me with Jace and Peyton, Firstly I had a hard time connecting with either of them and there wasn’t really much there between them to win me over either. They both clammed up instead of telling each how they felt, and when we were finally given sweet moments between them it didn’t have me sighing in appreciation for them.

Right of Way was just not the book for me I was expecting a magical road trip and great character growth. But instead was given a book which had flat characters with a flat romance and no road trip whatsoever. I had really high hopes for Right of Way, so I am disappointed that it let me down. 


23 comments:

  1. That is exactly how I felt. I just never felt connected Jace or Peyton nor did I feel the connection between them. Plus, like you said, these characters didn't even grow a tiny bit. All they did was run away from their problems instead of confronting them. I think this is the 2nd book by Lauren Barnholdt that didn't work for me. I'm not going to be reading much more by her unless there are some great reviews for her books.
    Fabulous review, Jasprit!

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  2. I keep seeing negative reviews for this and it makes me much less excited to read it. Too bad, because I LOVED her other book, Two-Way Street. Love Saving June :) But if the romance is bad, I can't really enjoy it. I might skip this after all. Thanks for your honest opinion!

    Alise @ Readers In Wonderland

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  3. Well it kinda backfires if there's no road trip and it labelled as oad trip, lol. I don't think I'll be touching this one anymore as characters being flat just don't work for me. And the romance seems like an equal fail.

    Brilliant review as always, Jasprit! <33

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  4. That's a shame - I normally really enjoy a road trip book, but I think I'll give this one a miss, the characters don't sound very gripping! Great review :)

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  5. What a shame! I like you would expect it to be summery read with sweet romance and everything that goes with that. Too bad you didn't connect with the characters and it always ruins the whole story. Great review Jasprit :)

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  6. Jasprit, I really appreciate your review of this one. I struggled with some of Lauren's other work, and I was hesitant to give this one a go because of that. I wish her characters had more depth so, at the very least, we could become invested in the little bit of action there is, you know? Nevertheless, thank you so much for your tactful honesty on this one!

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  7. Meh... Flat characters and flat romance. The covers depicts great romance and road trips. It's a shame. Thanks for the review, Jasprit.

    -Dannielle

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  8. I'm sorry this book wasn't able to impress you. I like road trips too and its sad that the characters were so generic and uninteresting and Jace's reason was unimpressive. I really liked Two-Way street by this author, Jordon has a good reason for the rift between him and Courtney, if you want to try it. Fantastic review!

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  9. Not a fan of whiny characters. :( I may have to put this off for awhile but I do have Amy & Roger's Epic Detour so I'll read that when I'm ready for a nice road trip book instead. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

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  10. I'm not sure what it is with the fashbacks, but I'm not into these kind of books lately. I do like them, or did, to be exact, but lately they've been not so good. I basically had the same problem as you did with one of the books I read during SL13 read-a-thon -- I didn't connect with the characters and they just pushed and pulled vice versa and by the end I didn't really give a damn to be honest with you. I'm sorry you didn't like it that much. I hope you'll have better luck with your next book:)

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  11. Wow, this really doesn't seem to be working for people! I've read a lot of negative things about it already. A roadtrip books sounds perfect for summer, so it's a shame that this wasn't quite what you were expecting. I can't see it working very well for me either. Sorry that this was such a disappointment, but I hope your next read is better!

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  12. WHAT. This book is screaming road trip, and there's no flipping road trip?! Goodness. I can totally see why you didn't enjoy this one, Jasprit. I'd seen some negative reviews before, but had been clinging to the hope that there would be some redeemable aspects, yet it seems like that isn't the case. The characters sound bland and actually slightly annoying, and I'm so sad that there aren't enough sweet moments to make up for it either. The back flashes also seem pretty dull. Le sigh. I'm sorry that you couldn't really enjoy this one, Jasprit! Thanks for the honest review, though. <3

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  13. Sorry this didn't work for you! The summary didn't stick out to me as anything too exciting, but I can see how it might be like other road trip novels I've heard are awesome. Bummer it was not the case.

    -lauren

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  14. Too bad this didn't work out, Jasprit! The summary seemed pretty typical but still interesting and I dig road trip novels. Maybe I'll check out Saving June or Amy & Roger's instead :D

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  15. I'm just not fond of road trip books, and I'm certainly not fond of flashbacks, so even if this DID work better, I'd still keep my distance. i haven't read Amy & Roger, or Wanderlust, even though Lisa tried to talk me into it.
    I'm sorry it didn't work for you, though.

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  16. I love a good road trip book, but obviously this one isn't that. I hate that! I am happy I didn't get this one. Thanks for the honest review, Jasprit!

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  17. It's quite disappointing to see that the romance seems flat in this one. I'm surprised to see that there is no road trip here - maybe I'll have to stop judging a book by its cover. Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts with us!

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  18. I remember this featured on a WoW post awhile back, so I'm sorry it didn't live up to your expectations! It's always worst when a book disappoints you, but thanks for warning me away from this one. It seems this author gets mixed reviews, but I definitely don't think I have enjoyed this at all. Fabulous review, dear!

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  19. Oh, how disappointing. This is the second less than happy review I've seen for Right of Way in the past few days. I need character growth! And a road trip!

    Great review, Jasprit!

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  20. Not connecting with the characters is the worst for me when reading a book. I can handle a mediocre story line or even some ridiculous reasoning, but I need to connect with the characters to really enjoy the book. Peyton doesn't sound like someone I would like at all. I probably would have end up DNFing it, but it's good that you stuck around. Sad that it wasn't very satisfying. Thanks for the review, Jasprit.

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  21. Aww, I feel bad that you had to endure a terrible experience reading this, Jasprit! I have high hopes for this book too, but now I think I have to lower my expectation. Road-trip books promise so much fun, so it's such a shame that this book didn't live up to your expectation. The characters don't sound very realistic either. :'(

    Anyway, thank you for the honest review! I hope you're reading something better to make it up now. :)

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  22. Sorry it didn't end up being the light summery read it seems like.

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  23. What a bummer. I am finding that I am less likely to like a book the more POVs there are. Of course there are outliers and instances where it is really well done but I think it is so much easier to be unsuccessful when we are given several perspectives to deal with--especially when it is two sides of one story. Oh well, I'm sorry this one didn't work out for you.

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